ST JOHN’S, Antigua – Antigua & Barbuda Cricket Association (ABCA) stands to benefit financially from the country’s hosting of three One Day International cricket matches between the touring England cricket team and West Indies.
ABCA President Zorol Barthley said the national body should benefit in a number of different ways.
“Well, obviously there is a host fee, a management fee, the share that we have with the West Indies Cricket Board from the boundary boards and in addition, we are facilitating our own merchandising to ensure we can galvanise support from that,” he said.
“In addition we are also enacting and reviving the members’ stand which is the President’s Suite and the seats in front of the President’s Suite so that now becomes a revenue opportunity for the Cricket Association.”
The funds, Barthley said, will go a long way in reducing the Association’s debts at the national level.
“Fortunately for us, coming out of these games and the fees and the activities that we will put on over these games, we are budgeted to come out of the red,” he said.
“As it stands now there are quite a few people that the cricket association owes, including clubs, for winning maybe a couple of years back. We are budgeted to have a positive cash flow to ensure that we can pay off all of those debts and have some money going forward to prepare our national teams and to prepare our programmes.”
The former player reminded that ABCA was instrumental in bringing the three ODIs to Antigua, adding it was all done in hopes of stimulating the economy.
“If you had 4,000 people coming to the island, spending basic money – with basic being a taxi from here to there, a match ticket, reasonable accommodation – and those 4,000 people are coming from anywhere and not just necessarily out of England, we are looking at nearly $20 million, a $20 million impact, and it is the reason why we went after the games, because of the economic impact,” Barthley said.
Antigua will host England in three ODIs starting on February 28, continuing on March 2 and ending on March 5. All three matches will be played at Sir Vivian Richards Cricket Grounds.